April 2014 Local Music Reviews

Local Review: Scalps – Serenades Of An Abomination

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Scalps
Serenades Of An Abomination
Escapegoat Records
Street: 02.02
Scalps = His Hero Is Gone + EYEHATEGOD + From Ashes Rise
 
We’re not talking dandruff shampoo here. Scalps is assuredly a reference to those bloody spoils of war—a perfect mascot for the music this band makes. This is one ugly album. Scalps combine D-beat, sludge and hardcore into a compelling swirl of aggression and bleakness, which is further sussed out in their lyrics. I need to award bonus points for the inclusion of lyrics in the music files I received, all other labels should take note. The entire EP is strong, although more variation in the syllables of the vocal pattern would send this over the top. This minor gripe is overshadowed by the weight of riffs and the intelligent inclusion of vocal samples, bongos and other sounds that make a three-note riff or a six-minute track the strong components of the album, rather than drudgery. I’m still not sure what the final track, “The Lynchian Slip,” is all about—is it a joke track? Avant-garde? Super serious? In the end, it doesn’t matter—this is a no-brainer destination for those who like their music thick, dark and heavy. –Peter Fryer
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